National League
Leyton OrientLeyton Orient0BraintreeBraintree Town0

Leyton Orient 0-0 Braintree Town: Orient crowned National League champions

Jobi McAnuff
Jobi McAnuff was carried off the pitch by Leyton Orient fans after the final whistle

Leyton Orient won promotion to the English Football League after their goalless draw against already-relegated Braintree Town confirmed them as champions of the National League.

The O's only needed a point to secure a return to the EFL after two seasons in the fifth tier, but title rivals Salford City were beaten 3-2 away at Hartlepool United, and Solihull were held to a draw at Dagenham & Redbridge.

Orient almost opened the scoring on the hour mark when Macauley Bonne found the net, only to be flagged offside.

Josh Koroma had a shot cleared off the line as the hosts pushed for a goal, but they did enough to secure top spot and the solitary automatic promotion place.

In a game which Orient dominated, the pressure on them began to ease as news filtered through of Hartlepool's three second-half goals against Salford.

Monday's goalless draw against Solihull had put Orient into pole position to win promotion as long as they avoided defeat by Braintree.

Salford needed to win with a five-goal swing against Pools and hope Orient lost, while Solihull had eight goals to make up if they won and both Salford and Orient were beaten.

There were rapturous celebrations at the final whistle, with over 8,000 home fans flooding the pitch as Orient's draw meant they had sealed their EFL return regardless of other results.

Orient's route back to the EFL

Leyton Orient on Twitter

Orient sealed the National League title and promotion at the second attempt, having finshed 13th last season after their 112-year stay in the EFL came to an end in 2017.

Soon after their relegation the O's were taken over by a consortium headed by Nigel Travis, who helped turn the club around following a tumultuous three years of ownership under Italian businessman Francesco Becchetti.

The appointment of ex-boss Martin Ling as director of football and the return of former chief executive Matt Porter to the board of directors brought stability back to Brisbane Road.

The O's suffered just one league defeat in the first half of the campaign and five straight wins in March cemented their promotion credentials.

Top spot was virtually assured following a 0-0 draw at third-placed Solihull Moors on Easter Monday, leaving Orient three points clear at the top of the table with a superior goal difference over second-placed Salford City and the Moors.

Manager Justin Edinburgh, appointed in November 2017, seals his second promotion to the EFL, having guided Newport County through the play-offs in 2013.

The east London club could yet seal the non-league double, emulating Colchester United and Wycombe Wanderers. with the FA Trophy final against AFC Fylde coming up on Sunday, 19 May.

Leyton Orient boss Justin Edinburgh speaking to BBC Radio London:

"I realised today [what it meant to the fans] after the final whistle and being involved in the celebrations and seeing the jubilation on so many people's faces.

"The players have played under an incredible amount of pressure home and away. We are everyone's cup final and I don't care what anyone says but everyone raises their game against us.

"What we have to realise is that today is a start and we're not going to step back or stay where we are, we want to try and continue to move forward.

"There's some players we need to try and keep at this club but where we are now, we shouldn't have any difficulty in keeping them."

Leyton Orient celebrate
Orient receive the National League trophy
Justin Edinburgh
Justin Edinburgh has been Orient manager since November 2017


Leyton Orient

Formation 4-4-2

  • 1Brill
  • 23Turley
  • 21EkpitetaBooked at 51mins
  • 7McAnuffSubstituted forLeeat 71'minutes
  • 15Happe
  • 6Coulson
  • 3Widdowson
  • 8ClayBooked at 6mins
  • 16BrophySubstituted forMaguire-Drewat 88'minutes
  • 19KoromaSubstituted forHarroldat 84'minutes
  • 9Bonne


  • 10Maguire-Drew
  • 18Harrold
  • 22Lee
  • 24Sargeant
  • 30Simpson


Formation 4-4-2

  • 21Killip
  • 4Eleftheriou
  • 6Karic
  • 25Matsuzaka
  • 10Richards
  • 9Henry
  • 16Lyons-Foster
  • 27Sagaf
  • 28James
  • 29AtkinsonSubstituted forBorgat 7'minutesBooked at 65mins
  • 35AllenBooked at 27minsSubstituted forCerulliat 78'minutes


  • 5Borg
  • 18Temple
  • 30Eze
  • 31Gipson
  • 33Cerulli
Josh Smith

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Leyton Orient 0, Braintree Town 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Leyton Orient 0, Braintree Town 0.

  3. Substitution

    Substitution, Leyton Orient. Jordan Maguire-Drew replaces James Brophy.

  4. Substitution

    Substitution, Leyton Orient. Matt Harrold replaces Josh Koroma.

  5. Substitution

    Substitution, Braintree Town. Alfie Cerulli replaces Iffy Allen.

  6. Substitution

    Substitution, Leyton Orient. Charlie Lee replaces Jobi McAnuff.

  7. Booking

    Oscar Borg (Braintree Town) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  8. Booking

    Marvin Ekpiteta (Leyton Orient) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  9. Second Half

    Second Half begins Leyton Orient 0, Braintree Town 0.

  10. Half Time

    First Half ends, Leyton Orient 0, Braintree Town 0.

  11. Booking

    Iffy Allen (Braintree Town) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  12. Substitution

    Substitution, Braintree Town. Oscar Borg replaces Robert Atkinson.

  13. Booking

    Craig Clay (Leyton Orient) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  14. Kick Off

    First Half begins.

  15. Post update

    Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

As It Stood

1Leyton Orient462514773353889
2Solihull Moors4625111073433086
10Sutton United461714155560-565
18Dag & Red461511205056-656
19Maidenhead United46166244570-2554
20Boreham Wood461216185365-1252
23Havant & Waterlooville46913246284-2240
24Maidstone United4697303782-4534
View full National League table

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